Yoosk Hustings: You ask; Leadership candidates answer…

In a couple of months more than 200,000 Labour Party members and many other trade union members will help decide the next Labour leader...

Our guest writer is Rob Macpherson, features and community manager, Yoosk.com

In a couple of months more than 200,000 Labour Party members and many other trade union members will help decide the next Labour leader. Each individual will have their own criteria for choosing a worthy victor and their own questions they want answering.

Over the course of the campaign all five candidates will field hundreds of questions from journalists, campaigners and members – but what if they haven’t answered your question? Perhaps you couldn’t attend a hustings event, didn’t get a chance to pose your question or maybe your question has already been asked and received an unsatisfactory reply.

In recent years Yoosk has given the public a chance to put their questions to dozens of Ministers, MPs and key public figures. Now it is the turn of Labour’s five leadership hopefuls to sit in the hotseat.

The premise behind the Yoosk Hustings is simple. Each candidate will answer ten questions on camera, as chosen by Labour members and the public. Anyone can visit the specially designed Labour section of the Yoosk site and ask a question of either an individual candidate or the whole panel. Users can also see what questions have already been asked, and vote for those which they would most like to see answered.

The question-gathering process will last until mid-August, at which point we’ll add the five highest-voted questions for each candidate to the five most popular questions for the whole panel and conduct our crowdsourced interviews.

The results should speak for themselves, but after we publish the Yoosk Hustings videos users will be able to vote on which answers they like most and which candidate best tackled the questions faced.

Yoosk has always been motivated by democracy, participation and accountability and it is reassuring to see that unlike the Treasury’s abandoned attempts at crowdsourcing that descended into a debacle, all sides of the Labour Party have embraced the concept and agreed to personally address those who otherwise would not be heard.

Yes, there have been crowd-sourced interviews before – even some in this campaign – but we hope the transparency of choosing the questions by a simple democratic vote will motive not only individuals, but also campaigners and groups to back a vital previously-unanswered question and get the online community to support its path onto our interviewer’s notepad.

We’re ready to ask your questions – the rest is up to you.

www.yoosk.com/labour will be gathering and voting on questions until August 17. Visit now and ask your question to ensure it is is there for others to vote on.

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